Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy Side Effects and Warnings

Written by FoundHealth.

Possible Complications

Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have this biopsy, your doctor will review a list of possible complications which may include:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding or bruising
  • Scarring
  • Nerve damage
  • Allergy to dye

If the lymph nodes are removed, there is an increased risk of the following:

  • Delayed wound healing
  • Additional pain
  • Lymphedema (a condition in which fluids collect under the skin causing swelling)

Some factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

  • Obesity
  • Recent or long-term illness
  • Smoking
  • Poor nutrition
  • Use of certain medicines
  • Bleeding disorders

Call Your Doctor

After arriving home, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:

  • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
  • Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or discharge from the incision site
  • If lymph nodes were removed: redness, warmth, swelling, stiffness, or hardness in the extremity
  • Fingers and toes should always be warm and pink. Call your doctor if they become dusky or swollen.
  • Nausea and/or vomiting that you cannot control with the medicines you were given after surgery, or which persist for more than two days after discharge from the hospital
  • Pain that you cannot control with the medicines you have been given
  • Cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain
  • New, unexplained symptoms

If you think you have an emergency, CALL 911.



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